Today marked the delivery of Delta’s 50th Airbus A220 aircraft. The airline has grown its fleet rapidly, with the first plane only joining the fleet in October 2018. The latest A220, the larger -300 variant, was delivered from Airbus’ manufacturing line in Mobile, Alabama.
Delta has officially taken delivery of its 50th A220 this week, a significant milestone for the airline and manufacturer Airbus. To celebrate the occasion, a group of Delta employees arrived in Mobile to pick up the keys to their newest aircraft. However, the delivery also underscores the airline’s commitment to the A220.
Delta took delivery of its first A220 in October 2018, kicking off a new era of short-haul travel (and much more!) for the airline. The first passenger flight took off in February 2019, with a service from New York LaGuardia to Boston. This means the airline has added 50 A220s in just over 26 months, with not even a pandemic slowing Delta down.
While the pandemic resulted in a delivery pause from March to September of last year, things picked up quickly from there. In October 2020 alone, Delta took on 12 new A220s, including the first, larger A220-300 variant. At one point, the carrier even took a new plane every day of one week in October.
In total, Delta has added 19 new A220s since the pandemic first took hold last year. This includes eight -300s and 11 of the smaller -100s. This is certainly an impressive figure and elevated Delta to Airbus’ second-largest customer in 2020.
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Delta’s history with the A220 extends to when it was still known as the Bombardier C-Series. The carrier first ordered 75 CS100s in early 2016, hoping to take advantage of its fuel efficiency, extended range, and lower emissions. When the project changed hands to Airbus, Delta remained undeterred and even boosted its order by 15 aircraft, for a total of 90 A220s.
The A220 allowed Delta to offer unprecedented network flexibility. The plane could fly as far as New York to Los Angeles, although it has never been deployed on routes that long (except for a while last year). Instead, Delta has been flying the aircraft from its main hubs to cities across the network, such as Salt Lake City, Sacramento, San Francisco, and many more.
Notably, the onboard experience on the A220 has been great for passengers. On a recent flight, Simple Flying Lead US Journalist, Jay Singh, covered the plane’s first class cabin and its exceptional onboard experience. As the plane only becomes more popular across Delta’s network, passengers will not be left unsatisfied.
With 50 aircraft now delivered, Delta officially has 45 more left on the books with Airbus currently. Nearly all of the remaining orders will be of the A220-300, with 41 more set to join the fleet. For now, the A220 continues to become more popular in Delta’s vast fleet of over 800 planes.
What do you think about Delta’s A220 fleet? Let us know in the comments!